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Check-in with Suzanne

Today marks International Women’s Day 2022, a global day celebrating the achievements of women while also calling for a more gender-equal world. #IWD2022 There are amazing women achieving so much in our own industry, along with the allyship of amazing men. And tomorrow we hope you’ll join the discussion to #breakthebias. WINiT by GBTA is hosting a virtual, interactive event featuring WINiT Board members along with special guests Margaret Smith from Accenture and Ace Callwood from Envoy as they explore the impact diversity, equity and inclusion has on business success and the power of male allyship. (Sign up here.) 


Also worth celebrating are the positive signs of continued recovery for business travel. You can see it in the results of the latest February GBTA COVID-19 Recovery Poll. It was also evident last week at the GBTA Conference Europe in partnership with VDR. I joined over 500 attendees from 22 countries who gathered in Berlin to reconnect and reimagine the future of business travel. This week, I’m in Mexico City for the GBTA Conference for Latin America to connect with travel professionals and leaders from across the region. Then in May, it’s time for the GBTA Conference for Canada in Toronto, and our Project-Crew-Teams Summit in Chicago. Looking at my business travel calendar, it almost feels like pre-COVID 2019. Almost. 


But even these positive indicators have been clouded by the recent events in Ukraine and Eastern Europe. Our hearts and support go out to the people impacted and toward restoring safety and peace for the region as well as the world. The global travel industry has been taking action. Many in our industry have been pulling together – from duty of care for staff to evacuating travelers out of Ukraine to adapting corporate travel policies and assisting with refugees – putting people first. Industry professionals are always very aware of geo-political situations as well as the impact on travel and travelers. In times like these, our industry is doing what it’s always done best: stepping up to help people and companies navigate the most challenging of circumstances.  




News to Know:

Pandemic redraws US airline route maps as business travel falters

US airlines are redrawing the flight map of America as they cut routes that the Covid-19 pandemic rendered unviable and add new service to cities that have prospered during the pandemic. US airlines could also trim more flights to contend with jet fuel prices that have soared since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine affected oil markets. The number of domestic flights scheduled at 11 mainline US airlines was 1.63mn in the first quarter of 2022, down 12 per cent compared with the same period in 2019, a Financial Times analysis of the Cirium data showed.

UK’s Passenger Locator Form to be ‘gone by Easter’

The UK’s Passenger Locator Form (PLF), which has to be filled in by all arrivals in the country, could be gone by Easter, according to Huw Merriman MP, chair of the House of Commons’ Transport Select Committee. Speaking at the Business Travel Association’s spring conference last week, Merriman said: “The key thing we’re trying to push on right now is the Passenger Locator Form. The Department for Transport cannot see the point of it.

How the world of travel is responding to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

Developments come on the heels of continued upheaval in air travel, as the European Union, Canada and Moscow all issued reciprocal airspace bans this week. In his State of the Union speech on Tuesday, President Joe Biden also announced the US will be closing its skies to Russian aircraft. Not surprisingly, Russia’s travel industry is responding in kind. On Tuesday, its Federal Tourism Agency recommended for its citizens to avoid visiting countries that have imposed sanctions on Russia and advised tour operators to suspend sales of tours to such countries.

Mexico, Belize, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras to Launch New Tourism Routes Across Mayan World

Looking to boost tourism across the wider historical region that is the ‘Mundo Maya‘, Mexico, Belize, El Salvador, and Guatemala have all teamed up to launch new tourism routes that will improve connectivity in the area, besides facilitating cross-border travel for visitors. The Mayan World is a 1,440-mile-long archeological circuit that encompasses four countries in Central America and five states in the south of Mexico. The zone is famous around the world for its well-preserved pre-Columbian monuments and shared culture.


GBTA News and Reminders:

GBTA Mexico Conference

Join us March 9th – 10th for GBTA Mexico’s Regional Conference, where you can learn more in depth and through its protagonists, the current issues your need to know about YOU Industry, in Mexico and in the Region. We will cover topics related to the current state of Travel, Meetings and Events Trends, Technology, Sustainability, how to improve the Association -daily work- between Corporate Clients and much more. To learn more about the agenda and the speakers click here.

WINiT by GBTA – International Women’s Day #BreaktheBias Webcast

Please join us Wednesday, March 9th as WINiT Strategic Advisory Board members engage in an interactive discussion with our members and guests Margaret Smith and Ace Callwood . WINiT Board Chair Michelle (Mick) Lee will open the event with an overview of 2022 programming and will take participants through two interviews and an open dialogue with several board members. To learn more on how to register and participate click here.